On the morning of October 13, President Tsai Ing-wen met with a delegation from the US Heritage Foundation headed by its founder, Dr. Edwin Feulner. The president thanked the Heritage Foundation for its long-standing support for Taiwan, and expressed hope that Taiwan-US relations and interactions can be further enhanced.
In remarks, President Tsai conveyed her gratitude to the Heritage Foundation for staunchly supporting Taiwan ever since its founding. Dr. Feulner, in particular, is a long-time friend to Taiwan who sent a congratulatory message to her, following announcement of the result of Taiwan's presidential election this past January. It is especially pleasing, she said, to see him in person.
Turning to the subject of Taiwan's recent exclusion from the International Civil Aviation Organization (ICAO) Assembly, President Tsai said that Taiwan strongly hopes to interact with other nations and develop a better understanding of information related to aviation safety. She also expressed strong regret and dissatisfaction that Taiwan did not receive an invitation from the ICAO.
President Tsai pointed out that Taiwan is actively seeking to expand its international participation. The government is now vigorously pursuing its New Southbound Policy in hopes of enhancing ties with countries from Southeast Asia and South Asia, whose economies are relatively complementary to Taiwan's. The idea is to spur upgrading and transformation of Taiwan's economy and make Taiwan more internationally competitive so that it can put more distance between itself and its competitors.
Commenting on the upcoming US presidential election, President Tsai stated that regardless of the result, we hope in any case to maintain close cooperation with the next US administration and to continue enhancing Taiwan-US friendship while bolstering bilateral exchanges and cooperation. Hopefully, she said, Taiwan and Dr. Feulner can work together to begin a new chapter in the bilateral partnership.
Also included in the delegation were Anthony Kim (Reasearch Manager of the Heritage Foundation's annual Index of Economic Freedom), Thomas Colbert (Senior Chairman of the Board, Community Bancshares of Mississippi, Inc.), and Kenneth E. Sheffer (the Heritage Foundation's former representative in Asia).
Source: Office of the President, Republic of China (Taiwan)